Waste King and InSinkErator are two top garbage disposal brands. But which one of them could be a better choice?
InSinkErator is the best when it comes to premium garbage disposals. They make quieter and better performing garbage disposals than Waste King. When it comes to standard garbage disposals Waste King is slightly ahead of InSinkErator.
Why is this so? If you ask a plumber about these two brands he or she will definitely recommend InSinkErator. On many plumber’s forums, like Terrylove, people absolutely hate Waste King. But if you ask customers, and refer reviews and ratings, Waste Kings are loved. Why is there a stark difference in people’s opinions?
I think the difference is because plumbers often compare Waste King disposals with premium InSinkErator disposals like Evolution Excel. These premium disposals are priced almost three times a top-end Waste King, so these comparisons are basically like comparing apples to oranges. A more reasonable comparison would be between the budget models of these companies.
I am, by no means discounting the premium disposal models by InSinkErator. They are awesome and are totally worth the money. Unfortunately, Waste King has no such premium-level disposals to match the competition.
Below are some popular Waste King and InSinkErator models;
Waste King L-111
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InSinkErator Badger 1
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Waste King L-2600
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InSinkErator Badger 5
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InSinkErator Evolution Compact
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Waste King L-3200
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InSinkErator Evolution Excel
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Waste King L-8000
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Waste King vs InSinkErator: Main Differences
Like I mentioned before both InSinkErator and Waste King are popular brands. You can’t go wrong by choosing either brand. However, there are some fundamental differences between these two brands.
The main difference between Waste King and InSinkErator is that Waste King disposals use high-speed permanent magnet motors while InSinkErator disposals use slower induction motors. In addition, Waste King disposals are comparatively cheaper than InSinkErator disposals.
But there are many other differences as well between these two brands of garbage disposals. Here is a detailed comparison;
|Waste King garbage disposals||InSinkErator garbage disposals|
|Use permanent magnet motors||Use induction motors|
|The average speed is around 2700 RPM||The average cutting speed is around 1725 RPM|
|Uses a corrosion-resistant plastic grinding chamber||Premium models use stainless steel grinding chambers and budget models have galvanized steel grinding chambers|
|Uses EZ mounting assembly, and 3-bolt assembly in some models||Uses 3-bolt mounting assembly|
|Sink flange material is a corrosion-resistant polymer||The sink flange material is stainless steel|
|Removable splash guards for most models||Splash guards are non-removable for most models|
|Marginal noise insulation on top models, loud low-end models||Very quiet top-end models, and loud low-end models|
|All models come with pre-installed power cords||Preinstalled power cords are optional|
|A limited number of compact models||Many compact models to choose from|
|Parts availability is limited||Parts are easier to find in local stores|
|No hex hole at the bottom||Hex hole provided for easy unjamming|
|No high-end technologies used||Hitech used in premium models|
|Warranty does not cover subsequent owners||Warranty is transferrable|
|Models have the longest warranties in the industry||Shorter warranties when compared to Waste King models|
|All disposals are budget models||Budget models, as well as premium ones, are available|
If I dig deeper I am pretty sure I can find more differences between the garbage disposals by these two brands, but I think these are enough to help you make a better buying decision.
Let’s see these differences in detail;
Waste King uses permanent magnet motors while InSinkErator uses induction motor
InSinkErator uses specially designed DuraDrive induction motors in all their garbage disposals models. Waste King uses permanent magnet type motors. The advantage of permanent magnet-type motors is that they run at their full speed from the start itself. Induction motors take a bit of time to reach their full speeds. The advantage of reaching high speeds faster is that it reduces the chances of jams.
Permanent magnet motors also are more efficient than induction motors. However, when it comes to a garbage disposal this difference is insignificant.
There is also a difference in sound. This depends on your perspective, for me induction motors are quieter than permanent magnet ones. Maybe their decibel ratings are the same, however, it is more pleasant to hear an InSinkErator running than a Waste King (that is when both don’t use insulations).
For those interested in knowing more about permanent type and induction type motors please refer to this link. However, I assure you that there isn’t much significance to this than what I wrote above.
Waste King disposals are faster than InSinkErator ones
The average speed of Waste King garbage disposals is 2700 RPM. For InSinkErator disposals that speed is 1725 RPM. Higher speeds mean higher cutting rates, so Waste King garbage disposals cut more per minute than those by InSinkErator. This means Waste King can grind food wastes faster compared to that of its main competition. This high speed also eliminates the chances of blocks in the disposals.
Then why does InSinkErator uses a slower motor? We will see about that in the coming points.
The build quality of InSinkErator disposals are better than Waste King’s
InSinkErator garbage disposals excel in build quality when it comes to premium models. They are all made of stainless steel, they look fabulous and they last long. But the budget InSinkErator models are not that much, the Badger series, which is made up of budget disposal models, are constructed with galvanized steel. As you know galvanized steel components are not as long-lasting as stainless steel ones.
On the other hand, Waste King uses time-tested, corrosion-free, high-quality plastic for most of its construction. The grinding components in low-end models are made of galvanized steel and those in their higher models are made of stainless steel.
Even though made of different materials both Waste King and InSinkErator disposals are on par with each other in terms of durability, however, there is a catch. Most plumbers don’t recommend Waste King disposals because they are more prone to leaks from the drain connection. This is because if you happen to over-tighten the drain elbow the thin metal sheet that connects it to the disposer can bend causing leaks. There is also a chance of leaks from the neck of the garbage disposal because the EZ mounting assembly is plastic and hence it is not as sturdy as InSinkErator’s.
InSinkErator Badger disposals are not free from leaks either. There are lots of complaints about the base of these disposals getting rusted and water leaking. However, the high-end InSinkErator Evolution series disposals are immune to leaks.
Also, the drain stopper and sink flange of Waste King garbage disposals are made of plastic (but with stainless steel finish) whereas those of InSinkErator models are made of Stainless steel. While this has no effect on their durability or performance, many people prefer to have them made of stainless steel.
Additional reading: Top 9 stainless steel disposals
Waste King uses EZ mounting assembly whereas InSinkErator uses 3-bolt assembly
When it comes to installing garbage disposals, there are two types of mounting assemblies; EZ and 3-bolt. Every garbage disposal in the world uses any of these two mounting assemblies.
Most Waste King units use an EZ mounting assembly. There are some Waste King units that use the 3-bolt assembly which I will cover shortly.
All InSinkErator garbage disposals use 3-bolt assembly, none of them are compatible with EZ mounts.
As you can see in the above picture, a 3-bolt assembly has three bolts to keep a garbage disposal in position. Both 3-bolt and EZ mounts use twist and lock systems that make the installation of garbage disposals easy. Compared to EZ mount installation via a 3-bolt mounting takes slightly more time, mostly to tighten the screws in place and fiddling with the snap ring. I don’t think there is a significant difference in time but then I have a lot of experience doing disposer installations.
One thing I like about the 3-bolt assembly is that it is made of stainless steel. This makes the connection with the sink really tight avoiding vibrations and leaks. On the other hand, the EZ mounts are made of corrosion-resistant plastic. It is durable but definitely not as strong as stainless steel.
As mentioned before some Waste King models use a 3-bolt assembly. They basically look like an unintended extension of their EZ mount, which is probably why they are very tall compared to the EZ mount units. This Waste King 3-bolt assembly is not compatible with that of InSinkErator. So basically if you are looking to swap an InSinkErator with a Waste King disposal having a 3-bolt assembly it is not going to work, you will have to redo the whole installation.
Removable splash guards: Waste King vs InSinkErator
Removable splash guards are a big deal when it comes to cleaning the garbage disposal. As you know the splash guards are installed in the drain hole of the sink to prevent the contents in the garbage disposal from splashing out. The undersides of these splash guards will have plenty of ground food wastes sticking which will eventually rot and smell. If these splash guards are removable them they can be cleaned easily.
All garbage disposal models belonging to the InSinkErator Badger series come with fixed splash guards. They cannot be removed unless you dismount the disposal. The disposer models in InSinkErator’s Evolution series, which is a premium series, all use QuietCollar sink baffles that can be removed from the top of the sink.
All Waste King garbage disposals which use EZ mounting assemblies come with removable splash guards. But those which use Waste King 3-bolt assemblies have fixed splash guards just like the InSinkErator Badger models.
InSinkErator disposals have the best noise insulation in the industry
InSinkErator uses the best noise insulation technology in the industry, and their garbage disposals are super quiet. Unfortunately, this technology is used only in the premium Evolution series garbage disposals whose price is much higher than the priciest Waste King.
Waste King does use some noise insulations but none of their garbage disposals are as quiet as InSinkErator’s Evolution Excel model. InSinkErator uses a technology called SoundSeal which involves layers of insulation around the garbage disposal as well as the use of anti-vibration sink mounts and a QuietCollar sink baffle which muffles sound coming out of the disposer.
But as mentioned before this comparison could be unfair because Waste King disposals are priced much lower. When compared with InSinkErator disposals in the same price range, like with Badger 5, Waste King garbage disposals are quieter.
There is a quick click sound when you turn on a Waste King garbage disposal. It lasts for only a second but some people complain that they are often startled by it. This is the noise of the hammers of the garbage disposal rotor clicking into position. Since Waste King disposals reach high speeds very fast this sound is more audible than from other competing models.
When it comes to low budget disposals, like 1/3 HP ones, both brands do not use any noise insulations, and so the disposals are louder. However, for me, the sound from InSinkErators feels better than that from Waste King. This difference in sound is owing to the types of motors they use.
Additional reading: Best quiet garbage disposals
Waste King disposals come with preinstalled power cords
InSinkErator claims that this is to avoid adding any additional cost to their garbage disposals. Waste Kings are already cheaper so I don’t think people are bothered with bearing this additional cost.
Some people like it when a garbage disposal comes with a pre-installed power cord, and some people don’t. If you have a power outlet under the sink having a preinstalled power cord is handy, it makes the installation very easy. On the other hand, if you don’t have a power outlet there, you will either have to install one or rip off the pre-installed cord and hard wire the unit.
InSinkErator has many compact garbage disposals while Waste King has fewer
Compact garbage disposals are the trend now, they are short and so they can be installed under sinks that are too deep.
InSinkErator has a number of compact garbage disposals whereas Waste King has only a very few models. And when it comes to higher power ratings, like 3/4 HP and 1 HP Waste King doesn’t have any compact disposals.
Additional reading: Compact garbage disposals
InSinkErator parts are easier to get than Waste King’s
One reason why plumbers love InSinkErators is that their parts are available in local stores. You can just go down to the next shop and buy the parts needed for an install job. But for Waste King the plumber will have to go to a big chain store like Home Depot, or order the parts online and do the installation at a later date.
InSinkErators are easier to unjam
Even though both Waste King and InSinkErator claims that their garbage disposals are less likely to jam than the competitor’s, they all get jammed once in a while. In such situations, the best remedy is to unjam the disposal by moving their blades to and fro until the obstacle causing the jam is dislodged.
For this purpose, all InSinkErator garbage disposals are provided with a hex hole at the bottom. They also come with an Allen key that matches this hex hole. Using this Allen key it is pretty easy to rotate the blades of the disposal and unjam the unit.
But Waste King doesn’t have any such hex hole. The only way to rotate the jammed blades of a Waste king disposal is by using a long broom handle inserted into the disposal through the sinkhole. As you can imagine this technique is much difficult when compared to an InSinkErator.
Top InSinkErator disposals come with advanced tech
The premium end InSinkErator Evolution garbage disposals are crammed with many technological features that are not present in any Waste King disposals.
This comparison is somewhat unfair considering the price differences between these models but I will be doing an injustice to InSinkErator if I don’t mention their top technologies.
InSinkErator uses technologies like SoundSeal, AutoReverse, and MultiGrind in their Evolution series garbage disposals. SoundSeal is a noise insulation technology that I mentioned before. It is a combination of insulations and anti-vibration mounts that helps to muffle and eliminate any sounds. AutoReverse is a feature seen only in select garbage disposals in the Evolution series. This technology reverses the direction of rotation of the blades every time the disposal is switched on. This helps to reduce jams and also even the wear and tear of the grinding components.
MultiGrind is another interesting technology where the food wastes undergo multiple stages of grinding. Multiple stages don’t mean that the disposal has multiple grinding chambers. Instead, the existing grinding chamber has some additional grinding components that make the grinding finer. The finely grounded particles are easy to be washed down the drain pipes without causing clogs.
Waste King offers the longest warranties
Within any power or price ranges, Waste King is miles ahead of InSinkErator in terms of warranty periods for their disposals. The top-end Waste King models come with a lifetime limited warranty whereas the maximum InSinkErator offers is 10-years.
Now there was a significant difference between the types of warranties they offered. InSinkErator offers an in-home warranty where the disposal is repaired or replaced in your home by a technician sent by InSinkErator free of cost. This warranty covers both labor and parts.
Waste King didn’t offer this in-home warranty at first, but now they do that.
Another difference is that the warranties of InSinkErator are transferrable to the subsequent owner. If you sell your house to someone else, the new owner is eligible for the disposal’s warranty. But for Waste King this warranty covers only the first owner.
Waste King & InSinkErator differ in pricing
Waste King doesn’t have any premium garbage disposal, all their machines are budget models. InSinkErator has a dedicated Badger series for those looking for pocket-friendly disposals. They also have a premium series called Evolution, which I mentioned multiple times before, that cater to people who are looking for the best.
Waste King vs InSinkErator: Which is a better brand?
If money is no objection by all means go for an InSinkErator Evolution series garbage disposal. They are the best in the industry, they are reliable, quiet, and powerful. If you are looking for budget garbage disposal Waste Kings are the best in terms of the number of choices, warranty, and performance.